2. Reasons for rising life expectancy.
At least 3(reasons in detail)
• Life expectancy is how long a person on average can live. As death
rates have fallen, life expectancy has increased.
• One reason for the rise in life expectancy is that people now have
improved nutrition meaning that the body is more resistant to
• A second reason for this is that there have been major medical
improvements ever since the 1950’s which have helped people to live
longer as they are more resilient to infectious diseases such as
• Another reason for the rise in life expectancy is that there has been
better housing that have less overcrowded accommodation, drier
ventilation and cleaner water to drink which would have caused a lot
of people premature death in the past.
3. Reasons for changes in the divorce
rate. At least (reasons in detail)
• Removal of legal and financial barriers has been a change in divorce rate, Prior to 1857,
divorce could only be obtained by Act of Parliament. This made it very hard for women to file
for divorce however in 1971, The Divorce Reform Act of 1969 widened grounds and replaced
blame with irretrievable breakdown. It made it cheaper and easier to get divorce which
caused divorce rates to increase.
• A second reason for changing divorce rates is that there has been a decline in stigma and
attitudes have changed. In the past the church really influenced the decisions of people as
they condemned divorce and refused to remarry them but since the 1960s divorce became
more socially acceptable as the stigma towards it declined .
• Secularisation is a reason for changes in divorce rate. The church has less of an impact on
people’s lives and decision making. So many churches have softened their views on divorce
because they fear losing credibility with the public.
• There has been higher expectations that are attached to marriage by couples, if something
happens in a marriage that affects the relationship badly then divorce will be the result.
People don’t really fight for their relationships as much as they should which the church
would encourage but they have less of an influence on people’s decisions .
• The final reason for changes in divorce rate is the change in the position of women in society.
Women have better rights under divorce law, they can have an education and get jobs
meaning that they have their own source of income making them more independent
(financially) women also know what they want in relationship and leave if mistreated. This
has caused an increase in divorce rate as 7 out of 10 of the petitions for divorce are from
women because of the unreasonable behaviour of their husbands
4. Reasons for the fall in the infant
mortality rate (with explanations)
• Improved housing with better sanitations meaning that there
is cleaner water and toilets that flush. This is good because
when babies are born they will be living in good and
comfortable environments and they will be less susceptible to
• Parents now have a better knowledge of their babies’ hygiene,
health and welfare therefore they know how to take care of
their child and keep them healthy which means that the child
won’t easily catch any harmful infections.
• Another reason for the fall in the infant mortality rate is that
infants now have improved nutrition and their mothers too
meaning that their body is more resistant to infection. There
are also improved services for mothers and babies such as
5. Ways in which adults may control the
activities of children (reasons in detail)
• Adults control children’s space, they tell them to play in some areas and
not others. There is close observation over children in public spaces such
as shopping centres especially when they are supposed to be in school
for example. More children are either driven or taken to school by adults
because of the fear of stranger danger making them more dependent.
• Adults control children’s time, they control their daily routines, when
they eat, when they wake up, when they sleep, when they play and so on.
They control the speed to which children grow up, they determine when
a child can do something by themselves or not for example.
• Adults control children’s bodies, they tell them how they can sit, walk,
run, what clothes they can wear, whether they can get piercings or not
and so on. They have to be fed, picked, cuddled, kissed and sometimes
children can be disciplined by smacking. Adults also restrict the ways in
which children can touch their own bodies, for example they are told not
to pick their nose or suck their thumb.
• Adults control children over their access to resources. Children have
limited opportunities to earn money , they to be in compulsory education
till a certain age and any money that they are given by parents depends
on the child’s behaviour.
6. Reasons for the decline in the number
of first marriages (reasons in detail)
• Cohabitation is where a couple are living together but not yet husband
and wife. Cohabiting is an easier option to do than marriage; hence this
is why more people choosing to do it. At one point cohabitating was
unacceptable and was seen as ‘living in sin’. Any child that wasn’t born
in wedlock was in some ways, parted from society and was treated as
• People’s attitudes towards marriage are changing, there is less pressure
to marry and more freedom for individuals to choose what sort of
relationship they want. The quality of the relationship is more important
than its legal status.
• The changes in the position of women is a reason for the decline in the
number of first marriages. Women now have better educational and
career prospects, meaning that they are less dependent on men
economically and financially. The growing impact of feminism that
marriage is a oppressive patriarchal institution might dissuade women
• The fear of divorce might put people off getting married as they see an
increased likelihood of their marriage also ending up in divorce since its
still on the rise.
7. At least 4 effects on society of an
• An ageing population would have an effect on public services
because older people now consume a larger proportion of services
such as health and social care than any other age group. This is
particularly true for people over 75 years .
• As an effect of this there will be more old age pensioners living in
one person pensioner households. At the moment 14% of them
account for of all households, most of which are females since they
generally live longer than men and most of them are younger than
• The non-working old are economically dependent meaning that
some of them needed to be provided for by those of working age
through taxes that pay for their healthcare and pensions. As the
number of an ageing retired population increases, the bigger the
burden on the working population.
• An ageing population could lead to a shortage of workers and hence
push up wages causing wage inflation. Alternatively, firms may have
to respond by encouraging more people to enter the workforce,
through offering flexible working practices
8. Ways in whichthe differencesbetweenchildren
and adults are becomingless clear in societytoday
• Children have more access to the adult world via the media
• Greater commercialisation of childhood
• Aspects of ‘youth culture’ increasingly enjoyed by adults,
adults are fighting to look younger and teenagers/children
want to look older and want to do the activities that adults do.
• Rise of lifelong learning means that education no longer
confined to childhood years
• Economic dependency on parents more likely to be carried on
10. Reasons for, and the effects of,
changes in family size
• People are having lesser children these days so that they can make greater financial and
emotional investments in them, which is better than having a lot of children then having no
money to provide for them.
• The changes in the position of women has had an effect on family size. Women are
choosing to gain an education and get a career first which means that they are having
children much later or no children at all.
• There is easy access to reliable contraception like birth control and abortion, to prevent
women from having any unwanted children. People are more free to choose what they
want and 1 in 5 women aged 45 is childless
• The infant and child mortality rates have fallen dramatically, so that women can be fairly
certain that their children will survive into adulthood.
• Compulsory education; changing attitudes; geographical mobility; changing role of women;
extended family; child-centredness; divorce; the welfare state; the cost of children; family
diversity; decline in infant mortality; dual-worker households; the dependency ratio; ageing
population; impact on public services. instance by comparing the importance of particular
factors or by locating the debate between different perspectives (eg feminism, New Right).
• Lower birth rates and fertility rates have several effects on the family and society E.g.
Having fewer children means women are freer to go out to work, creating the dual earner
• Public services: Fewer schools and child health services may be needed, and less needs to
be spent on maternity and paternity leave . However, these are political decision – e.g.
government can choose either to reduce the number of schools or to have smaller class
11. Ways, in whichgovernmentpoliciesand/orlaws
may shapethe experiencesof childrentoday.
• The government has mn
• Concepts and issues such as the following may appear: patriarchy;
• surveillance; ideological control; gender regimes; marital breakdown;
• structure; family diversity; welfare dependency; underclass; reserve
• labour. Laws/policies on abortion, divorce, contraception, reproductive
• technology, marriage, adoption, pensions, benefits, taxes, education,
• childcare, child protection, sexuality, immigration may be discussed.
• and evaluation may be developed, for instance by comparing the impact
• different policies/laws or by discussing perspectives on social policy and
• family (eg New Right, feminist, functionalist).
12. Reasons why the birth rate has
Changes in the position of women
1. Women have increased educational opportunities •
2. More women working
3. Changes in attitudes to family life and women’s role
4. Easier access to divorce
5. Access to abortion and contraception
Decline in the infant mortality rate
1. Reason for the fall in IMR
2. Reasons include improvement in: - Housing - Sanitation - Nutrition Mothers: - Knowledge of
hygiene and child health - Health services for mothers and children
3. Medical factors did NOT play much until the 1950’s, when the IMR began to fall due to mass
immunisation, antibiotics, and improved midwifery and obstetrics
Children have become an economic asset
1. Until the late 19th century, children were an economic asset because they went to work from
an early age
2. Now they are an economic liability: Laws banning child labour: and introducing compulsory
schooling mean they remain economically dependent for longer
3. Changing norms: about children’s right to a high standard of living raises their cost. As a result,
parents may be unable to afford to have a large family
1. Childhood is now socially constructed as a uniquely important period and this has led to a shift
from ‘quantity’ to ‘quality’:
2. parents now have fewer children and lavish more attention and resources on these few
13. Reasons why the symmetrical
family has become more popular
• The symmetrical family has become more common over the
last century because:
• The change in women's position women now go out to work
as well as men
• New technology makes housework easier so that men can also
do it and
• More couples living away from the areas they grew up in
means they are socially isolated and are more likely to have a
14. Reasons why gender division continue
to exist among many couples
A gender division of labour continues to exist among many
• Socialisation at an early age means that women tend to do
cleaning while men do DIY
• Women are likely to work part time because they have other
responsibilities like housework and men work fulltime
• Dunne (1999) argues that the division of labour continues
because of ‘gender scripts’ these are expectations and norms
that set out the different expectations of men and women in
15. Changes linked to how industrialisationhas
led to changes in the positionof childhood
• compulsory schooling: has made children economically
dependent on their parents for longer; has made them an
economic liability for their parents;
• impact of mass media: has undermined the distinction
between childhood and adulthood by giving
• children access to previously ‘adult’ knowledge; decline in
infant mortality: has meant parents have developed closer
emotional attachments to children now that they are more
likely to survive infancy.
• compulsory schooling;
• child labour laws;
• impact of mass media;
• decline in infant mortality;
• growth of a consumer market for children
16. Functions that the family performs
• It socializes children, it provides emotional and practical
support for its members, it helps regulate sexual activity and
sexual reproduction, and it provides its members with a social
identity. In addition, sudden or far-reaching changes in the
family’s structure or processes threaten its stability and
• Primary socialisation of children to equip them with the basic
skills and society’s values, to enable them to cooperate with
others and begin to integrate them into society.
• Stabilisation of adult personalities, the family is a place where
adults can relax and release tensions enabling them to return
to the work place , refreshed and ready to meet its needs